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Health Benefits Boosted

Advice to Seniors: Run, Don’t (Just) Walk

Regular walking is a boon to the health of the elderly, helping to lower their risk of obesity, arthritis, heart disease, diabetes and premature death, but researchers at Colorado and California universities report that seniors who also run are able to walk better, longer and more easily as they age than those who only walk. The study found that 70-year-olds who jogged regularly could walk as effortlessly and efficiently as an average sedentary college student, while the elderly who merely walked regularly were no more efficient or energetic as walkers than sedentary people their age. In short, walking does not prolong seniors' ability to walk with ease and efficiency, but running, even gentle jogging, does, and may help even those who don't begin running until their 60s or 70s.

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